A 40 year old male came to my clinic with the complaint of joint pains since a few months. He said that there was terrible stiffness every morning on waking, on moving about a bit the intensity of the stiffness reduced. Especially the back and knees were affected and visible swelling was observed. At first thought one would think of Rheumatoid arthritis taking the symptoms and age into consideration but all the tests for rheumatoid factor were negative only his ESR was elevated which would be if there was any inflammation in the joints. On digging further into all his past illnesses it became very evident that he had suffered from PSORIASIS which had cleared up. Unfortunately for him the Psoriasis which had been superficial and limited to the skin was now affecting the deeper tissues and causing what is known as PSORIATIC ARTHRITIS.

This is a type of chronic disease characterized by inflammation of the skin and the joints. There may or may not be any visible skin affection but when present it is usually seen as patchy, raised, red areas of skin inflammation with scaling. The statistics show that nearly 10 % of psoriasis patients develop an associated inflammation of their joints.

This disorder is more evident in the fourth and fifth decade of life and both males and females are affected equally. The skin and joint complaints often appear separately. In fact the skin disease precedes the joint affections in nearly 80 % of the cases. But there are a few rare cases where there is no history of skin disorder and this makes the diagnosis difficult.

Psoriatic arthritis is a systemic rheumatic disease that can also cause inflammation in the eyes, heart, lungs, and kidneys. This occurs when the skin disease is suppressed by strong chemical medication and medicated strong ointments which clear up the skin but drive the disease deeper into the other vital connective tissues. Therefore its best not to suppress the skin eruptions.


The cause is still unknown though there are a few theories about how it might be caused. Currently most researchers feel that it involves a combination of genetic and immune, as well as environmental factors. A genetic marker HLA-B27 is frequently found in the blood of patients suffering from psoriatic arthritis. There are also some changes observed in the immune cells.


The symptoms are as follows:

1. The joints most frequently involved are the knees, ankles, and joints in the feet.
2. The joints are very painful, swollen, hot, and red.
3. The fingers or toes can swell up considerably when inflamed and appear like a "sausage".
4. Joint stiffness is very common and is usually worse in the morning on waking.
5. Some patients also develop inflammation of the tendons (tendinitis) and the cartilage.
6. There can also be inflammation of other organs in severe cases especially of the eyes, lungs and aorta.
7. Acne and changes in the nails are commonly seen in this disorder. There is usually pitting and ridges seen in the finger and toe nails. Acne is frequently observed in patients with psoriatic arthritis.


There are a number of different types of treatments availible for this disorder but none of them help to cure or control the disease effectively. These are just temporary measures to relieve the symptoms. Homoeopathy is the only system of medicine that has the capacity to control the disease and nearly cure it. This is due to the fact that in Homoepathy we treat not only the disorder but the patient as a whole taking into consideration his entire personality and symptoms which are peculiar in his case. The constitutional remedy boosts the patient's own immunity to fight against the on going inflammation and disease process.

Along with the Homoeopathic treatment it is very essential to exercise in the correct manner. Exercise programs should be given by a physical therapist who customizes the program according to the disease and physical capabilities of each patient. Warm-up stretching and other techniques like hot shower or heat applications are helpful to relax muscles prior to exercise. ICE application after the routine is extremely important to reduce the post-exercise soreness and inflammation


The constitutional remedy is the most effective one which retards the disease process and tries to revert the system to its original form but along with this one needs to give other co-lateral Homoeopathic medicines to provide symptomatic relief for the pain, swelling and movements. There are a number of remedies in Homoeopathy which will help and I have listed a few important ones.


The 40-year old male patient whose case I cited earlier was given this remedy since all his symptoms matched perfectly with those of the drug.
The early morning stiffness which got better with movement is the key symptom. Here the patients all ways says that the initial first few movements are very painful then it becomes slightly better. The patient describes the pain as "tearing" especially of the tendons and ligaments. Another common description is as if the part is "stiff and paralysed" and there is a constant desire to move the limb.

A Rhustox patient gets relief from taking a hot bath or applying heat to the joints. Cold and dampness are the two things that makes their pains worse therefore winter and the monsoon season are the usually when the symptoms are worse. Rhustox also has the typical Psoriasis skin symptoms and the most peculiar symptom is " itching better by Hot water".

Rhustox 200, 5 pills four times a day will give great relief.


There is stiffness and swelling just like in Rhustox but the difference between the two is that a Bryonia patient is much worse on movement rather than getting relieved. In fact these patients prefer to lie in bed and on the affected side whenever they are in pain. They cannot bear to be touched and will allow you to examine the joint reluctantly.

Here the patient describes the pain as if "sprained" with a lot of weakness and heaviness. Bryonia patients feel better when they bandage the affected part and apply pressure but movement is unbearable. Normally they can't take the heat and want everything cold including large quantities of cold water but the psoriatic pains are relieved by warmth.

Bryonia 200, 5 pills four times a day will make movement less painful for the patient and reduce the inflammation of the joint.


Aurum or rather gold is an element also used by the other systems of medicine to modify the disease. It prevents the progressive joint destruction and deformity but injectable gold or oral gold preparation given has tremendous side-effects including bone marrow suppression which leads to anaemia , low white blood cells and adverse effects on the kidney which is extremely dangerous.

In Homoeopathy we potentise this gold to such neglible amounts so as to avoid the harmful side-effects but retain the curative power of the drug. Therefore it is used when there is already considerable joint destruction. The patient says his pain is deep as if the bones are sore and aching. There is a lot of tightness around the affected joint, sensation as if bandaged. All the pains are worse at night time and better in the morning.

Aurum Met 200, 5 pills four times a day will prevent further destruction and cease the disease process.


This is one of the most important drugs in Homoeopathy for pain and joint affections. Whenever there is a history of injury to the part no matter how trivial or how long back it occurred this remedy should be thought of. The injury could have been the trigger factor for Psoriatic Arthritis to develop.

The patient says he feels as is the part is bruised or beaten and has great fear of being touched due to the sensitivity of the part. He says that everything is too hard and is restless to find some comfortable place to rest. Like Rhustox, Arnica is better by motion but the difference is that in this drug Cold gives relief.

Arnica 200, 5 pills four times a day will make the pain disappear rapidly.